Kate Batty Secures Conviction in Attempted Murder Case.Park Square Barristers
Kate Batty secured a conviction in an attempted murder case.
This was a complex prosecution in which the defence of insanity was being advanced by the defendant. It was not in dispute that the defendant suffered from delusions and auditory hallucinations as a result of her paranoid schizophrenia. There was no doubt that she was acting in response to those delusional beliefs at the time of the stabbing. However, the defence of insanity is rarely advanced, and rarely made out. Whilst many defendants will act out of character whilst experiencing symptoms of mental illnesses, the defence of insanity is not available to all. There are several criteria that must be satisfied before the defence can be made out.
The trial, lasting 3 days, involved the calling of three consultant forensic psychiatrists who each gave evidence as to the mental health of the defendant and provided their opinions upon the key issues of whether she understood the nature and quality of the act (that is, understood what she was doing) and whether she appreciated that it was legally wrong. As their opinions differed from one another, the trial involved extensive cross-examination of the experts.
The jury unanimously convicted the defendant of attempted murder, possessing an offensive weapon and affray.
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